[OPE-L] transformation problem

From: Rakesh Bhandari (bhandari@BERKELEY.EDU)
Date: Tue Feb 28 2006 - 13:33:25 EST

Hi Jurriaan,
Thanks for your ideas, but I don't see how they speak to the challenge
Fred, Alejandro and I have put forward in different ways.
1. Marx is commonly thought to have admitted to an error in his transformation
2. That error has thought to be his failure to extend
his transformation to the inputs which he admitted that he left
in the form of values or simple prices (prices proportional to values).
3. Many attempts to extend Marx's transformation have been offered--
numerous simultaneous solutions with different invariance conditions
(total value=total price, surplus value=profit, s/v invariant), fixed
point iterations, new interpretations, etc.

I have argued that all those solutions are based on a misinterpretation
of what Marx understood as his own error in his calculations. That
is, these extended solutions cannot be understood as attempts
to solve the error or mistake or problem that Marx had himself
called attention to.

I have further argued that Fred and Alejandro are wrong to deny 1.
Marx did in fact admit to an error in his calculations,
but it was not the error one hundred
years of criticism has taken it to be. But of course my
argument does not get off the ground without their groundbreaking
challenge to dogma.

I have thus argued that one hundred years of discussion
of what is thought to be the main technical problem in Marx's
economics has been a waste of time.


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